Regional local FM stations average is 88 US$ for 30-seconds ad slots during peak time. The rates are minuscule compared to advertising rates in major capitals such as London. The Arab Advisors Group believes that the nascent state of the private FM radio stations market in the Arab World could be one reason for the relatively low rates.
During the past few years, the Arab world’s FM radio industry has been undergoing a boom in the form of high quality commercial local and international FM radio stations. The presence so many stations presents a range of venues through which content producers and advertisers can target the region. Country-to-country differences provide further opportunities to tailor messages according to different audiences.
For FM radio stations, commercial advertising is important because it plays a major role in revenue generation and eventual profitability. Stations strive to gain popularity amongst listeners in order to attract advertisers. To do this, they must provide compelling and relevant content by producing or buying interesting programs and music (or sometimes broadcasting content without paying royalties on it as happens with quite a few stations in the Arab World). They must also price their advertisements appropriately, taking into account factors such as time of day, cost, and competition.
A new report, “An Analysis of FM Radio Advertising Rates in the Arab World” was released to the Arab Advisors Group’s Media Strategic Research Service subscribers on April 26, 2005. The 30-pages report, which has 26 detailed exhibits, provides a detailed analysis of the FM Radio advertising rates in Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and the UAE. In total a representative sample of 16 local and regional FM stations are analyzed. Please contact the Arab Advisors Group to get a copy of the reports Table of Contents.
Although Egypt has the highest average peak rate for FM radio advertising rates compared to other Arab countries, its rates are still relatively low by international standards; a 30-second spot on the UK’s Virgin London 105.8 FM, for example, costs as much as GBP 600 (US$ 1,146) during the peak hours of 6:00 to 10:00 am (on a Tuesday). The contrast becomes even more marked when Virgin Radio’s peak rate is compared to the Arab world’s regional average peak of US$ 88.
“FM radio advertising rates are set according to a number of factors that are mainly tied to the numbers of listeners. The most important factor is the time of day; unlike in the case of TV, the radio can be listened to in the car, at work, or at home, giving advertisers different times in which to target audiences (for example, during traffic rush hours). The peak listening time can be defined as the time of day which has the largest audience and, therefore, is associated with the highest advertising rates.” Ms. Nadine Usta, Arab Advisors research analysts and the author of the report commented. Öur analysis shows that the region’s FM radio advertising rates are highest during the morning hours of 8 to 9 am, followed by the evening hours of 6 to 7 pm. This implies that generally accepted peak listening times in the region are in the mornings before the majority of people go to work, and for some time in the evenings when they are at home or in the car.” Ms. Usta added.
© 2005 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )